A group of Christian scholars were asked recently, "What's it like for someone to become a Christian after living a life away from God? What can a new convert expect, and what will others expect of him?"
The answers all showed some of the basic things that would occur when life-changing decisions are made. Charting the course of life in a different direction, with new opportunities as well as new warnings, is to be expected.
One of those, when asked the above questions, answered, "Being a Christian is not for those who are looking for the easy road, but it brings the rewards of knowing it is the right road."
I have done some thinking and reading and praying about how I would answer the question. I am not going to give a list of "do's and do not's," but simply give some encouragement for those who may be wrestling with taking the step of becoming a part of God's spiritual family. My list is not complete, and every Christian will let you know such a list can be an on-going thing. We are a people who daily recognize the need of forgiveness and grace to face the issues everyone faces in life. Here is my list...see what you think.
1. All Christians must be aware of the daily presence of God. He is now with you and longs for close communication through prayer and the written Word. Your life will find peace as the will of God becomes primary in your choices and decisions. God's will sets the standard.
2. You are beginning a journey which involves turning from self, to a total surrender of all you are, to God. This journey is one that begins when you become God's child, and continues throughout your life. In fact, it is a lifestyle we cultivate as we open more and more of ourselves to God.
3. We have been added to the Lord's church, therefore we will anxiously look forward to meeting him in worship, in fellowship, and in day to day associations with others in the church. Being a part of the family is one of your greatest blessings and good works are accomplished as we strive to reach out to the world with our good deeds and the message of the gospel.
4. The grace which we have received from God, is to be extended to others in our gracious acts of service, our words, and our love for one another. Learning to love others as God loves them is a huge challenge, yet it is conditionally connected with God's love for us.
5. We are now a people whose objectives become less for the things of this world, and more about our eternal existence. We are laying up treasures in heaven rather than in the temporary things this world offers.
Like the man we quoted earlier, Christianity is not for those who look for the easy road, but it is the right road. May God bless you as you in your journey, and please know we are praying for you.